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2008 Ford Escape Limited

The Ford Escape is built on the Ford CD2 platform, which is in turn based on the Mazda GF platform, which was used by the Mazda 626. It was introduced for the 2001 model year. The Escape is one of the leading vehicles in the compact SUV segment, and it has been continuously updated throughout its model run to keep it atop the pile of competition. The Escape is filled with content that makes it easy to like. The 3.0-liter V6 engine gives strong acceleration performance. Buyers will not be looking for more power in a V6 Escape. The four-speed automatic transmission works well with this engine. Shifts are smooth, both on upshift and down. The transmission always seems to know the best ratio for the given driving conditions. The V6 engined Escapes never seem to struggle. Reviewers don't believe this engine to be the smoothest on the market, but they certainly don't call it the roughest. It remains more satisfying than the four-cylinder engines found in most compact sport-utilities. Noise, vibration and harshness go up a level on 4 cylinder equipped Escapes. Noise and vibration reduction measures were taken in fitting the engine with a balance shaft, but further efforts should be made in future to further reduce interior noise. The 2.3-liter Duratec 4-cylinder engine became available on XLT models for 2006 model year. Snow doesn't seem to be a problem for the Escape. Automatic 4WD system equipped Escapes provide excellent traction in slippery conditions, not to mention stability.

The Escape treats occupants to a comfortable ride over a variety of road surfaces, although off the road the Escape seems to be lacking. The four-wheel drive system is based on a front wheel drive platform. Any serious gradients will leave this sport utility spinning its wheels. The suspension does not have the articulation needed in real off road conditions. For everyday road travel, however, the Ford Escape is an excellent choice.

See also the main fact sheets for the Ford Escape.

High Points[]

  • V6 gives satisfying power and never seems to be lacking
  • Clean styling
  • Rides better, out handles most of its competition

Low Points[]

  • I4 has anemic performance on highway
  • Jeep Liberty is more capable off road.
  • Fuel consumption (V6 4WD)

Performance and Handling[]

Anti-lock brakes operate smoothly. Pedal response has been praised. Drum brakes are used on the rear except on V6 4WD models and Ford Escape Hybrid, which have with four-wheel disc brakes. Brake Assist helps handling, allowing full braking power when it senses the driver has mistakenly relaxed pressure on the brake pedal in an emergency stopping situation. In addition, electronic brake-force distribution provides more effective, more stable braking.

Gas Mileage[]


FWD 2.3L manual (XLS)

FWD 2.3L automatic (XLS,XLT,Limited)

FWD 3.0L (XLS,XLT,Limited)

4WD 2.3L manual (XLS)

4WD 2.3L automatic (XLS,XLT,Limited)

4WD 3.0L (XLS,XLT,Limited)


2.3L I-4

2.3L I-4

3.0L V6

2.3L I-4

2.3L I-4

3.0L V6

MPG (City/Highway)







Reliability and Maintenance[]

Interior and Comforts[]

The interior of the Escape has been enhanced with the facelift from mid 2005. A flow-through console and bold-looking gauges are the key improvements. The Escape has a 60/40 split rear bench seat to make it fast and easy to reconfigure the rear cargo area. They fold down, but not perfectly flat. Inside space is competitive, but not class leading. The mid-range XLT offers premium cloth seats which are pleasant to look at and sit on. Base model XLS Escapes definitely look it.


The Escape has 12 configurations in XLS, XLT, XLT Sport and Limited trims. Escape Hybrid should be considered differently, in its own light. A freshening for 2005 added new headlamps (with crystal lenses), fog lamps, front and rear fascias, aluminum wheel designs and a new honeycomb grille. In 2006, three new clearcoat metallic colors, Titanium Green, Dark Stone, and Blazing Copper came available.

Styles and Options[]

The Escape is available in one 4-door body style. Front wheel drive is standard with four wheel drive being optional. The nodels are XLS, XLT, and Limited. The XLS can come with an optional manual transmission. The Limited can come with an optional navigation system. All models can come with Ford SYNC.

See Also[]

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Main Competitors[]


In 2004, the Ford Escape Hybrid was released. This hybrid electric vehicle is 75% more fuel-efficient than the regular Escape according to Environmental Protection Agency tests and was the first SUV available to the public with hybrid technology.

External links[]

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This page uses content from Wikipedia; see Ford Escape, which includes these contributors.